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Health Behaviors and Juvenile Delinquency [2018]

This study draws upon Kaplan’s theory of self-attitude and deviant response to examine the relationship between health behavior and juvenile delinquency. The analysis, examining data from the Monitoring the Future 2013 study, shows that health behavior is associated with multiple forms of delinquency even after accounting for illness, as well as pertinent demographic and individual factors. The findings support the position that health behaviors have a distinct theoretical relationship with delinquency related to self-attitude, separate from the effects of illness. The article builds upon prior work regarding physical health and delinquency, demonstrating that a healthy lifestyle may decrease the likelihood of delinquency through an improvement in self-attitude.

Daniel C. Semenza

Crime & Delinquency, Vol 64, Issue 11, 2018

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